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Former Monk Wins Record Amount On Lottery
A 58-year-old man has won the biggest-ever lottery prize awarded in the US state of Tennessee.
Roy Cockrum, from the town of Knoxville, collected his prize of $259m (£151m) from the Powerball's head office in Nashville, saying he was going to pocket a lump-sum payment of $115m (£67m) straight away.
The 58-year-old, who was involved with a religious order called The Society of Saint John the Evangelist before he returned home to look after his parents, bought his ticket at a local shop on June 11.
"It's going to be my job to work very hard to make sure that every single penny of this prize is a blessing to whoever it touches," he was quoted as saying by CBS News during a news conference.
He later issued a press release to describe his feelings.
"It's a hard thing to process; your brain doesn't want to believe it," he said.
"I was in a rush to take Mom to a medical appointment when I first checked the ticket.
"I saw the Powerball match and three winning numbers and thought, 'Wow! $500! You never win that much on Powerball.' I felt really lucky.
"But then - wait a minute, wait a minute - there's another number, and finally I realised I hit the jackpot.
"It literally knocked me to my knees. My prayer was simple - 'Lord have Mercy!' But life goes on, so I picked myself up, put the winning ticket in my wallet and went to pick up my mother. I walked around University of Tennessee Medical Center all that morning with a $259.8 million winner in my pocket."
Mr Cockrun worked as an actor and stage manager for 20 years.
He says he wants to use most of his prize money to set up a charity to support performing arts groups around the country.